Kindergarten

Kindergarten is all about nurturing a child’s natural curiosity; five and six year olds love to learn about the larger world and share their discoveries.

 

KindergartenMeridian’s program balances social and emotional learning with a challenging and developmentally appropriate curriculum. Students explore self, family, community, and Global Studies using meaningful essential questions. Creating a vibrant, safe, and emotionally secure classroom encourages students to share their feelings and solve problems together.

Curriculum

Character education emphasizes individual responsibility, from contributing to a functional classroom environment to demonstrating thoughtfulness. Kindergartners are learning to work independently, collaborate successfully, identify feelings, and solve problems. The Responsive Classroom approach and Social Thinking Curriculum provide a framework for classroom routines and community-building. Kindergartners learn to impact the wider world through ¬¬Service Learning Day and participation in community events like collection drives for local causes. Students build connections beyond the classroom by sharing experiences with their third grade “buddy class.”

Literacy is integrated into routines and good practices throughout the school day. Teachers focus on developing each child’s skills and confidence in reading, writing, listening, and speaking. As readers, kindergartners focus on letter sounds and mouth placement, sight words, context and picture clues. As writers, students learn to use basic conventions, “best-guess” spelling, and efficient letter formation. Listening involves stories read aloud, verbal instructions, and group meetings. Speaking ranges from everyday conversation to class discussions, from small-group explanations to all-school presentations.

Math introduces the five strands of mathematics through daily routines and hands-on activities. Through the Bridges in Mathematics curriculum, kindergartners concentrate on organized and accurate counting, creating and extending patterns, identifying shapes, collecting and analyzing survey data, and explaining their mathematical thinking. Songs, movement, games, and independent exploration engage student interest and build confidence in mathematics

Social Studies begins with the personal: students learning about themselves and their families. Children find connections between themselves and others, identifying similarities and differences. The perspective is broadened through the school-wide Global Studies program, encompassing basic world geography as well as environments and families in the specific region being studied that year.

Life Science: Kindergarteners begin to explore the world around them through observation, classification, and hands-on experiences. The centerpiece of the Kindergarten life science program is utilizing our surrounding campus and park. Each Kindergarten class chooses a tree on our campus to study throughout the year. We observe the tree through the seasons and learn about the life cycle of trees with a specific focus on an apple tree. Through their nature journals, Kindergarteners record their observations not only about their particular tree but also the world around them. Students are introduced to the idea of classifying by comparing the similarities and differences between various trees. Kindergarteners have the opportunity to visit the Woodland Park Zoo with a focus on animals and their habitats. In the fall and spring, students visit the Children’s Tilth Garden to observe and learn about the seasonal growth and parts of a plant.

Physical Science: Students learn of the use of wood and paper, the Kindergarten students investigate different states of matter. By using the FOSS Wood and Paper Kit, students participate in numerous experiments that emphasize the properties of solids. In the block area, students build structures and are introduced to the concepts of motion, force, push, and pull.

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